Quiet and secret diplomacy entail more than simply discretion: they involve a conscious desire to leave activities unadvertised, or to hide certain form of engagement from scrutiny. Secrecy has a long history: it has been reinforced on occasion by laws and institutions, and has long been used to hide the frailties of political leaders. Secrecy can provide space for complex negotiations, especially with unappealing actor such as terrorist groups. However, it may be difficult to maintain, it may be a barrier to learning from experience and it is increasingly challenged by vigorous media, and by the expansion in the range of actors involved in diplomacy. Its consequences are often difficult to assess; as a result, it may be that it is best appraised by attention to situational issues rather than some grand ethical theory.
|Title of host publication||The SAGE Handbook of Diplomacy|
|Editors||Costas M Constantinou, Pauline Kerr, Paul Sharp|
|Place of Publication||London|
|Publication status||Published - 2016|